Learn about New Mexico’s wetlands on Tuesday, March 5 at the Los Alamos Nature Center. Emile Sawyer from the Wetlands Program at the New Mexico Environment Department will introduce the audience to our state’s wetlands and provide an overview of the process of mapping and characterizing our wetlands resources. This talk begins at 7 p.m. and is free to attend.
The staff of the Wetlands Program at the New Mexico Environment Department is currently in the process of mapping all of our state’s wetlands, including those in the Los Alamos area. The program aims to protect and restore the state’s remaining wetlands and riparian areas and to increase self-sustaining, naturally functioning wetland areas so they continue to benefit New Mexico’s future.
Like most other states in the country, New Mexico has lost about 90 percent of its original pre-European settlement wetlands resources. “A large scale effort directed at their restoration and protection could provide an increase of essential ecosystem services in our watersheds, such as groundwater recharge, stream flow maintenance, flood attenuation, climate change mitigation, clean drinking water and more,” Sawyer said. Despite all of the alteration and destruction of wetlands resources, Sawyer’s team estimates that New Mexico has about 1 million acres of wetlands remaining.
PEEC was founded in 2000 to serve the community of Los Alamos. It offers people of all ages a way to enrich their lives by strengthening their connections to our canyons, mesas, mountains, and skies. PEEC operates the Los Alamos Nature Center at 2600 Canyon Road, holds regular programs and events, and hosts a number of interest groups from birding to hiking to butterfly watching. PEEC activities are open to everyone; however, members receive exclusive benefits such as discounts on programs and merchandise. Annual memberships start at $35. To learn more, visit www.peecnature.org.